Can America survive without a leader?

To the editor:

America survived the Civil War because Abraham Lincoln took responsibility for keeping the nation together. We survived the Great Depression and World War II because Franklin Roosevelt took responsibility for reviving the economy and defeating fascism.

In contrast, our current President says, “I don’t take any responsibility at all,” for federal government shortcomings in responding to the Covid-19 pandemic.

According to Dr. Fauci, “… if you had a process that was ongoing and you started mitigation earlier, you could have saved lives.” In 2018 the Trump administration disbanded the federal pandemic response team, leaving us unprepared. It ignored early warnings about the new coronavirus from experts in and out of the government. Now, the President wants to defund WHO. Americans are dying unnecessarily.

Two weeks ago, the President maintained that individual states were responsible for dealing with the crisis. At the beginning of last week he insisted that he alone could decide how to respond, hinting that governors who opposed him were guilty of mutiny. A few days later, he once again demanded that states take responsibility for dealing with the crisis.

America is facing a new kind of test. Can we survive and recover from a crisis without a President providing consistent leadership we can trust? Fortunately, the answer seems to be ‘Yes’. Governors and local officials have stepped into the breach to provide the trustworthy leadership that is missing from the President.

Most governors give us the facts whether they are pleasant or not. By following the guidelines set out by the Walz administration, Minnesota has managed to be more successful in ‘flattening the curve’ than most other states.

The White House has encouraged states to compete with each other for resources to fight the coronavirus. To overcome lack of national leadership, states have joined in regional agreements to coordinate efforts against the coronavirus.

America is a nation of individuals working together for the common good. Even without a leader to unite us, we can weather this storm and come out stronger on the other side.

Sherwin Skar



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